Canadian rapper Drake is asking Pickering Mayor David Ryan for better Wi-Fi towers to be set up so he can listen to new music from Pickering, Ontario-based producer Boi-1da.
“Can the Mayor of Pickering set up some stronger Wi-Fi towers so @boi1da can be able to send me all his newest beats?? Trying to cook up. Thanks,” Drake posted an image on his Instagram stories.
The City of Pickering’s manager of public affairs and corporate communications Mark Guinto replied in an Instagram post using nearly two-dozen references to Drake’s music.
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Hey @champagnepapi /Drake/Drizzy/6ixGod, If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late – I’m responding on behalf of @mayordaveryan and @cityofpickering I’m Upset that @boi1da was having trouble with our public WiFi. It’s the Best I Ever Had, so I’m not sure why Matt couldn’t link up proper. You Searching For Answers I Do not Know Nothing. Maybe it’s because 1,000 residents use our WiFi every single day? Our Wifi access points are very Successful and Make Me Proud. We Started from the Bottom, and Now We Here with 65 WiFi access points installed across Pickering in City facilities and some prime public areas. We look to deploy more WiFi access points, so in a couple of years, you’ll be able to go 0 to 100 Real Quick. We’re also working on expanding and strengthening Pickering’s broadband network so there will be fast and reliable internet service whether it’s in Matt’s crib or Marvin’s Room. God’s Plan? Nah – it’s the Mayor & Council’s plan. We want to attract the best and brightest residents and businesses here. Two Birds One Stone. That’s The Motto (unofficially). Peep these Headlines – Pickering has been recognized Back to Back as one of the ‘Most Intelligent Communities in the World’ by the ICF. Durham Live Casino and Entertainment will open in 2020, and we’re just getting started on our transformational downtown redevelopment project. Momentum is building across east Toronto, York Region, and Durham Region for an airport in Pickering. If that happens, we invite Air Drake to be the first plane to land here. Yes Indeed. Pickering is the next great city. We’re working Nonstop. Shout out to 6Dad @normkelly who Boi1da reached out to. Norm personally called Mayor Ryan this morning to see if he could help. The 6ix & Pickering is a collab that’s just Too Good. Take Care.
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“I wanted to have a little bit of fun while communicating some of the work happening in Pickering with respect to Wi-Fi and broadband,” he told the CBC. “It’s an important subject matter and it’s something that we take seriously.”
And while Guinto’s message to Drake reflected that there were some issues that the city was facing, Boi1da had a lot more to say.
In a reply on Instagram, the producer wrote: “The issue isn’t public Wi-Fi, the issue is the fact that all North of Durham, not only Pickering has no good services for Internet connection at all, but yet have some of the highest tax paying residents and prolific residents in your area that need internet connection and other services that are essential to run our businesses,”
“This is a problem within the area that has been going 10+ years with no resolve. I’m serious about my business, my music and my money, and what we have been given is not sufficient,” he wrote.
The producer even tagged national carriers Bell and Rogers in the reply.
The city applied to the Connect to Innovate program to get funding so it can improve internet services in rural areas. Its application was not approved.
The Connect to Innovate program was announced in 2016 and received a top-up to the fund in Budget 2019.
Guinto told the CBC that the city has been working with telecommunications companies to find a solution and better the internet services in the city. He also said other stakeholders like Hydro One have been working with the city.
“In reality broadband internet access is necessary. It’s no longer a luxury. It’s not anything frivolous. It’s something that we need for our residents, business and for students who need it for their education, especially considering that the province wants to introduce e-learning,” he said in the article.
It is worth adding that Rural Economic Development Minister Bernadette Jordan unveiled her Connectivity Strategy that will help connect 100 percent of Canadian households to high-speed internet by 2030.
MobileSyrup has reached out to Jordan’s department for a comment.